In a superb opinion piece in The Hill on Feb. 3, Drs. Jeffrey Klausner and Noah Kojima lauded the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for finally recognizing that naturally acquired immunity to COVID-19 is superior to that induced through vaccination.
That was the undeniable conclusion of a study conducted in California and New York.
Understandably, as medical professionals, the authors did not take the extra step of blaming the CDC for nearly two years of botched policy.
Instead, they explained that the new report “finally acknowledges what many have suspected for a long time—that surviving COVID-19 provides excellent natural immunity not only [to] repeat infection, but also to hospitalization and death for the delta variant of COVID-19.”
Klausner and Kojima are too generous. The scientific fact of naturally acquired immunity has not merely been “suspected” for some time. It was well-established through numerous rigorous, large-scale studies, including—but not limited to—one from the Cleveland Clinic (last June), another from Israel (last August), and a third from Qatar (last December), all of which confirm what humans have known for centuries; namely, recovering from a viral infection confers (often long-lasting) immunity.
Instead of incorporating this incontrovertible evidence into its COVID-19 vaccination guidance and recommending that recovered individuals should be exempt from mandates, for months the CDC doubled down on its false mantra that vaccine-induced immunity is superior to that following recovery from the virus, so everyone should get the vaccine.
It has done this through sleight of hand. Because vaccination may slightly elevate the levels of antibodies in COVID-19-recovered individuals for a brief period, the agency has run misleading headlines, claiming that certain studies prove even the naturally immune should get the vaccine.
But as many scientists have noted, this transient antibody boosting does not necessarily equate to a clinical benefit. In other words, it may not result in more robust immunity, and regardless, any increase is negligible.